Director: Roman Polanski
Writer(s): David Ives, Roman Polanski, Leopold von Sacher-Masoch
Cast: Emmanuelle Seigner, Mathieu Amalric
Awards: Nominated for Palme d'Or at Cannes (Roman Polanski)
Based on the Tony Award-winning Broadway play by David Ives, which itself was based on Leopold von Sacher-Masoch’s groundbreaking novella, VENUS IN FUR is the latest film from master filmmaker Roman Polanski. Alone in a Paris theater after a long day of auditioning actresses for his new play, writer-director Thomas (Amalric) complains that no actress he’s seen has what it takes to play the lead female character: a woman who enters into an agreement with her male counterpart to dominate him as her slave. Thomas is about to leave the theater when actress Vanda (Seigner) bursts in, a whirlwind of erratic – and, it turns out, erotic – energy.
“Polanski’s direction of his performers is assured. His camerawork is precise. And the power games – moving, shifting, constantly surprising and inescapably, queasily conflating art and artist – hold us in their thrall.” – Stephen Whitty, Newark Star-Ledger
“The couple’s movie-long pas de deux, during which time a reversal of roles takes place and the inner Thomas is exposed to the world (us), is staged with delicious irony and ingenuity by Mr. Polanski.” – John Anderson, Wall Street Journal
“Wickedly smart and wickedly playful, Roman Polanski’s adaptation of David Ives’ Tony-nominated Venus in Fur works on so many levels, it’s almost dizzying.” – Steven Rea, Philadelphia Inquirer